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John Hamilton Gray

born: Charlottetown, P.E.I., 14 June 1811
died: Charlottetown, P.E.I., 13 August 1887
representing: P.E.I.
position: Pro-Maritime Union, Pro-Confederation

John Hamilton Gray

After receiving his formal education on the Island and in England, John Hamilton Gray, one of two gentlemen of the same name attending the Charlottetown conference, entered the British army at the age of 19. For more than twenty years he served in the 7th Dragoon Guards in campaigns in South Africa and India. In 1856 he retired from military service and returned to his hometown although he spent time as colonel of P.E.I.'s volunteer brigade.

In 1858 Gray entered politics and was elected into P.E.I.'s Legislative Assembly. From his position in the assembly he promoted bible classes in schools and sought to settle the century old Land Question, resulting from absentee landlords owning much of the land on the Island, once and for all.

At the time of the Charlottetown Conference Gray was as the premier of P.E.I. and as such was the host of the conference. On the first day of talks he was also elected chairman of the Maritime delegates. Gray entered the talks as a proponent of Maritime Union but soon came to see the advantages of Confederation for the Maritime provinces.

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